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2001-03: Task Force Recommendations

Be it resolved that the NFB:AE Board's position on the Task Force's recommendations from "Fulfilling the Promise Report" be ratified.
 

REC. 1. Self-identification be sufficient to give a person with learning disabilities the right of access to multiple alternate format materials.
 

The NFB:AE Board is in favour of recommendation "1". However, it does have implications in terms of availability of resources.
 

REC. 2. The Canadian National Institute for the Blind energetically pursue the extension of its library services to all print-disabled Canadians.
 

The NFB:AE Board was against recommendation "2" as the Board felt these services should be provided by the N L C in conjunction with community libraries - not left up to not for profit charities.
 

REC. 3. The Federal Government act on the recommendations from "Toward Implementing In Unison."
 

REC. 4. Human Resources Development Canada establish a universal support programme for funding print-disabled Canadians to acquire and be trained in the use of assistive technologies.
 

The NFB:AE Board is in favour of recommendations 3 and 4 which go hand in hand. It is essential for people with disabilities to be able to use the new technologies. Implementation could be a shorter term goal as well. It is slated as medium term.
 

REC. 5. Canadian Heritage seek an amendment to Section 32 of the Copyright Act to include exemption for large print publications.
 

The NFB:AE Board is in favour of this recommendation. However, concern was expressed that this type of exemption takes the burden off the publishers to produce alternate formats themselves.
 

REC. 6. Canadian Heritage seek an amendment to the Copyright Act to include exemption for the non-commercial narrative description of cinematographic works.


The NFB:AE Board deferred any decision on recommendation "6" until additional information is obtained.
 

REC. 7. The Government of Canada establish and fund a clearinghouse for e-text to which Canadian publishers must make their works available.
 

The NFB:AE Board is against recommendation 7 as it establishes the library system as the only means to obtain e-text. Further more, it is only available
to not for profit alternate format producers. It is also a means for the publishers to avoid producing alternate formats themselves. However, it was pointed out that this clearing house could or might be a step toward something better.
 

REC. 8. Federal, provincial and territorial subsidies be available only to publishers which provide e-texts to the clearinghouse simultaneous with print publication.
 

The NFB:AE Board is against recommendation "8" because it does not put pressure on publishers to provide the e-text to individuals who want to purchase a copy, and it goes against the Board's position in recommendation "7". However, there was concern that an opportunity to at least make a step toward something better could be missed by not establishing a clearing house.
 

REC. 9. The National Library of Canada keep its CANUC-H/CANWIP databases up-to-date, comprehensive (inclusive of new media, e.g. tactile), representative and available to all alternate format producers. Access to the databases must be free.
 

The NFB:AE Board is in favour of recommendation "9", and notes the phrase "all alternate format producers" (private and not for profit).
 

REC. 10. The Government of Canada, through Canadian Heritage, annually appropriate at least $7.5 M, beginning FY 2001/2002, to support the production in Canada of multiple formats (audio/Braille/large print) of materials which have authorship outside governments.
 

The NFB:AE Board is in favour of recommendation "10" only if it includes the following:

The money must be open for tender to all alternate format producers, and publishers should receive money to produce their own alternate formats, including Braille, audio formats and large print to name three.
 

REC. 11. Braille be recognized as a standard alternate format.
 

The NFB:AE Board is in favour of recommendation "11" - goes without saying.
 

REC. 12. The National Librarian expand the availability of Braille materials by negotiating access for Canadians with national and international providers of Braille materials.
 

The NFB:AE Board is in favour of recommendation "12".
 

REC. 13. The National Librarian negotiate a Canadian site license with recordings for the Blind and Dyslexic.
 

The NFB:AE Board is in favour of recommendation "13. One question related to this recommendation was discussed: why does this agreement need to be made when Canadians can already access material from RFB&D?
 

REC. 14. The Government of Canada, through Industry Canada, take a lead in participating in and funding the development, adoption and promotion of information and access standards such as NISO/DAISY/WAI and alternate format production standards.
 

The NFB:AE Board is in favour of recommendation "14".
 

REC. 15. Governments at all levels use the force of procurement to promote and encourage the adoption of universal design standards for accessibility; only materials complying with such standards should be purchased.
 

The NFB:AE Board is in favour of recommendation "15".
 

REC. 16. The Treasury Board Secretariat require that all federal print material be available concurrently in multiple formats on demand.
 

The NFB:AE Board is in favour of recommendation "16".
 

REC. 17. Departments and agencies of government at all levels train their personnel to be aware of the needs of print-disabled Canadians, of the availability of multiple format materials and in the use of the related assistive technology.
 

The NFB:AE Board is in favour of recommendation "17".
 

REC. 18. All levels of government make their publications available in multiple formats through the Canadian library system at no additional cost to the library.
 

The NFB:AE Board is in favour of recommendation "18".
 

REC. 19. The Government of Canada, through Canadian Heritage, recognizes the primary role of the public library system by funding services for the use of print-disabled members of their communities.
 

The NFB:AE Board is in favour of recommendation "19".
 

REC. 20. The National Library of Canada provide leadership and support to Canadian libraries to facilitate interlibrary loan and encourage the sharing of materials in alternate formats.
 

The NFB:AE Board is in favour of recommendation "20".
 

REC. 21. The National Library of Canada's Adaptive Technology in Libraries Program, which operated from 1991 to 1995, be re-established.
 

The NFB:AE Board is in favour of recommendation "21". But, the Board is only in support of this recommendation if the following criteria is part of eligibility for funds:

Consult with consumers when making this money available to ensure that the equipment is appropriate to meet local consumers needs, and local libraries make it publicly known that the equipment and technology is available.
 

REC. 22. The Government of Canada, through Human Resource Development Canada and Industry Canada, fund training programmes for staff of Canadian libraries and for users of adaptive technology.
 

The NFB:AE Board is in favour of recommendation "22". It is essential to ensure the equipment and technology purchased under recommendation "21" can work for local library users.
 

REC. 23. Canadian Heritage, working in collaboration with the National Library of Canada, the CLA and ASTED, negotiate the delivery of alternate format materials as an integral component of the Library Book Rate.
 

The NFB:AE Board is in favour of recommendation "23".
 

REC. 24. Canadian Heritage seek method to expand Free Matter for the Blind to include all print-disabled persons and to include new formats.
 

The NFB:AE Board is in favour of recommendation "24".
 

REC. 25. The National Librarian of Canada immediately establish a Council on Access to Print Information to provide advice, recommend funding, monitor progress and make recommendations regarding the implementation of this report. Its membership should be drawn from consumers, advocacy groups, librarians, public servants, publishers and alternate format producers.
 

The NFB:AE Board is in favour of recommendation "25", and it strongly promotes the inclusion of "of advocacy organizations" being on the Council.
 

REC. 26. In conjunction with every programme designed to increase accessibility for print-disabled Canadians there must be an aggressive programme of public awareness.
 

The NFB:AE Board is in favour of recommendation "26". However, one note was made that the promotion should not be oriented to any one organization other than the Government itself.

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